Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Feeling Christmassey!

It's my 5th Christmas living in San Diego, and while each year I secretly wish for a white Christmas, I know the only white will come from the white caps in the windy Pacific Ocean. I am lucky enough to live by the beach and have the ability to ride my bike {almost} every day. The storms of yesterday have passed - and thank goodness. That hour spent on the trainer was dreadful. I pay the sunshine tax for a reason, and it's definitely paid so I don't have to ride my trainer.

I haven't always felt so "Christmassey" living in the sunshine capital of the US --> but this year has been a bit different. Kyle and I set up the fake tree we bought two years ago for our first Christmas {I'm allergic to pine pollen} and I wrapped presents early to put under the tree. I finished my Christmas shopping with very little stress, and really tried to get into the spirit of the season. I drove slower, and smiled more, and it's actually working.  And in spite of not being with family for this Christmas, I'm very much looking forward to the day with my husband. Pretty tree + presents in the morning, followed by a bike ride up the coast with Noko,  {sadly no Ian; he's getting a new hip today!} sunset on the beach, and then a delicious dinner.

Today, I rode the beach cruiser with the custom basket to the post office to mail the last of the gifts - which will be arriving on time! Unfortunately logging miles on that bike doesn't count as training as the Garmin didn't make the 4 block journey. {hey, I did a long run this morning!}

Warm wishes and Merry Christmas from San Diego!

Zipp/Sram rep sonja brought yummy cookies,
a sram scarf and custom name tags for my bike!

tree on the beach - postal run

beach ball ornaments!

love where we live :)

make a wish!
yep, superstitions still run true with me. :)

enjoying those superstitions with our new roommate. Stone's
Vertical Epic 11-11-11 and 12-12-12. Both were unique!

Friday, December 14, 2012

oh what fun...

2012 has been a pretty unique year that has been split in two. I look back and see pre and post deployment sections, and I'm sure many military families must feel this on a regular basis. Kyle and I have survived his first deployment and I'm happy to say, it wasn't that bad. It wasn't about wishing my life away so he'd come home sooner. It was about living in the moment, here and now, and enjoying the time I had to grow as an individual, and our time to grow as a married couple, even though we were many time zones away. We continue to learn how we both communicate and to speak those languages. He's a pretty amazing husband, friend, cyclist and sailor.

On the training and racing front, I've gone through a couple of phases. I took a semi relaxed approach to training for Panama 70.3 and Carlsbad half marathon and ended up with a half marathon PR and reconfirmed that my body hates heat/humidity and the importance of course selection. I had a blast in Panama and it was a good break from work and Kyle's deployment. I took some time off after, and then put myself to a 30 day run challenge, which was semi successful in gaining some sort of run fitness {and a lot of tight muscles} but it enabled me to hold a base through San Diego International Tri, which is my yearly benchmark race, and I snagged another PR and another AG podium. Unfortunately run fitness didn't last until Carlsbad tri, where another last min race plan was good enough for AG win, but no PR.

Tri racing decided to take a back seat to summer fun and a pretty amazing sailor who was finally home. We did a couple of criterium races, me aboard my new steed, Super Grover and he on his new ride, Karen. I mourned the loss of Cookie Monster in the spring, and about the time that I got my sailor back, Cookie Monster returned as a frame to my life, in a crazy turn of events.

Fall has brought a return to semi structured training, as the year ahead brings some big racing and big changes. Kyle is switching commands and even though it's "shore duty" he'll be gone quite a bit. Things at the shop are continually changing, yet it seems sometimes nothing does. I really love bike fitting and think I'm pretty good at it too. Making people faster and more comfortable is a very rewarding part of my job. Educating a new cyclist and teaching them to clip in for the first time is a unique experience. Showing other tri-nerds how far off their position was, and how much more comfortable they can and will be {and not to mention faster} is awesome. Bike fit is near and dear to me and it's definitely become a passion. Doing what you love on a daily basis is pretty amazing.

This holiday season, we'll be home. At the beach. Work schedules and duty sections require us to stay close. It'll be nice to have Christmas morning together this year, aboard our bicycles for a fun ride up the Pacific coast...because we can! I'm happy to have my sailor home for the holidays and my thoughts are with those who cannot be with their families.

all our best :: warm wishes from San Diego this holiday season :: merry christmas

{sneak peek at the christmas card; because i'm no good at keeping surprises}

Colorful Joy Christmas Card
View the entire collection of cards.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Happy two year anniversary to my husband. Kyle, you are my sherpa, my friend and my lover. It is you who brings a smile to my face and a light to my day. Even when you are far, you are close in my heart.

We celebrated with quick trip to LA and a nice dinner at 3rd Corner in OB. Riding the tandem of course. Sad I didn't get a pick of us all dressed up but we did get one of the 2010 cabernet to celebrate. He was out to sea on our actual anniversary on the 16th; such is the life of a Navy wife. 

we chose the wine based on
1) the year {2010}
2) the label art {gears}
it was actually delicious.
After work on Saturday the 13th we drove up to LA and stayed at a campground in Bonelli Park. Had some poptarts for a bedtime snack and crashed as we were up early for a morning of racing! He dropped me off at the park entrance for the Bonelli Olympic Distance Triathlon and he was off to Dominguez Hills for 2 criterium upgrade races. Check out his video.

I also celebrated my 4 year anniversary of my first Olympic distance race. Pumpkinman was an interesting journey and it's fun to look back. Bonelli is a very grassroots triathlon, no frills and no porta potties...not kidding. I don't think they were prepared for the increase in participants this year, but for once it paid off to be a girl, as all the bathrooms had 3 stalls for the women and only 1 for the men. :) No assigned racks left me finding a sweet spot at the edge of the bike in/out area {less time running with the bike = better} and laid out my sioux girl towel, shoes and helmet and I was off to the start.

Not surprising, the race started late. They didn't allow anyone in the water after the first wave went off, so my warmup was nil. 10 min later and the 1 and only ladies wave was off. 200 yards out and I was alone. 400 yards out and I started passing men from the wave that started 5 min ahead. And that's the story of the swim. The lake was "dirty" but not disgusting. It actually tasted like plain water. Just a bit muddy.

Got out in 22ish min, not happy with the swim but not disappointed. Ran up a hill to transition and took my sweet time to get my shoes on and onto my bike, and a girl passed me. I never saw her again.

The bike course is 3 loops around the park. After heading out of transition you climb a short hill, head over an interstate and turn right for a very long and fast descent. The rest was short climbs and turns and some flat areas and a final climb back into the park and back up towards transition. Albeit unsafe at parts due to the partially open roads and lack of volunteers {I saw 1 volunteer on the entire course, and the rest were traffic controllers/state patrolmen} the course was a blast. Loop two had a bit of a crazy start as there was a car on the course and bikes were going on all sides of it and the traffic controllers had lost control. No frills = no aid stations. I had 1 aero bottle 28oz of water and one 24oz bottle with 250 calories of gatorade and 1 vanilla gu.  2:16, which I felt was pretty respectable with the lack of training and the significant amount of climbing on the course.

aero dork
Heading into transition the temp was starting to get brutal. Luckily a good portion of the run course was on trail that was shaded. Plenty of aid stations along the course {I think 6 within the 6.2 miles} with just water. Felt alright on the run. Flats and downs were good and any type of incline had me almost walking. I have ZERO strength right now and am working on this base, but after only 2 weeks of training I had ZERO expectations. And I was pleasantly surprised.

yeah finished. why do i do this again?
Struggled through but managed a 52, and I'll take it. Finished and saw Kyle waiting for me so we could book it out of there and get me back to San Diego for work. :( We went back to the campsite to teardown and actually headed back to the race site for the podium shot and got on the road.

Won my AG and the results say 3rd OA, but I'm pretty sure I was 4th. Congrats to the husband for a top 10 finish and more racing experience.

superfast san diego peeps. 
Another year married. Another race under my belt. keep on keeping on.

{happy birthday to a faithful reader - my father! - excited to see you soon!!}

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

ready, set.

So here I am. Week 1. I had a little head start last week [well, skipping the running bit] with a couple bikes and a swim at the Superfrog Triathlon on Sunday. You may have heard, Lance was there. I got asked to be on a relay a day before, and sure, why not?! Oh yeah, remember last year, when I had that near drowning experience and came up laughing. It can't be that bad, right?

Nah, it was fun. After barely finding my relay members in time to gather the swim cap and timing chip I was off to the beach. A friendly hi to the Eternal Timing dudes who work at the Tri Classic and a bit of a warmup [potty stop] and back to the start line. 3, 2, 1 off with the elite/relay wave. Nothing like 6' waves to greet you! Love Coronado. I was dolphin diving right behind super swimmer Erin, and after that first wave she was no where to be found. As I was swimming I looked over and saw Keith walking and adjusting his orange goggles. It was rather comical, as he was keeping up. After that, I was alone. Not sure how this happens on a .6 mile, two loop course, but I can never seem to find feet that are my speed. A couple more crashing waves, some darker than others and I was out to the turn buoy. Started back in and I saw coach Scott from the Mission Valley Y Masters swimming without goggles - that sucks! Tried unsuccessfully to catch a wave, but at least I didn't get pummeled like Frank [who got tossed so hard into the ocean floor that the impact broke his toe - epic.] Sun was shining and I was wearing non tinted, clear goggles. Awesome sauce. Got out of the water and ran the beach to start the 2nd lap. I was also made [in]famous by

Red caps were positioned and ready, and after some heckling from Steve, Frank and Jake I "ran" back into the water as 3, 2, 1 go - their wave started. Double awesome sauce - young boys running me down as I enter the water for my 2nd loop much slower.

beautiful waves.
I found myself way right of the turn buoy as there was a bit more current. I didn't over correct, but made it to the turn, again alone. Turned back towards shore, and what do you know, I see coach Scott again. This time I managed to catch a wave. And I caught this wave like I've never caught one before. I was in the perfect spot and caught it at the right time. Wow. So. Much. Fun. I was dolphining through, in, and on top of that wave - smiling with a bit of a fear, and actually breathing with my head out of the water. The wave took me into shore saving quite a bit of time. Ran into transition and passed off my chip to my relay biker.

The rest of the day I hung out with friends cheering for other friends racing. Kyle had duty on Saturday, so he rode over when he got off in the morning on Sunday. Was super impressed with everyone's performances. Frank managed to bike pretty hard, but withdrew from running cause he knew something was up with his toe. Karen finished her first half, Erin killed it as a super swimmer _ runner for 2 different relays. Jake won his AG even after a hilarious bike handling incident involving a cone and obnoxious friends screaming. Funny pics, but I wish we had that on video, for Erin Merz's viewing pleasure. Lots of awesome times posted by TCSD folks, and Beth's stellar win. Oh yeah, and that Lance guy too.
kyle photo bombing Lance Armstrong @ Superfrog Tri
Monday was a masters swim. Today was a horrible GWL that I don't want to talk about, and I have to back that up with a run this evening. Kyle is gone for a bit; up to San Fran for Fleet Week. I hate it when he's gone, but it probably was good timing, as I attempt to find structure in my new training schedule.

Oh yeah, holy #indiansummer! Temps are crazy out here, and I hate to say this, but I'm actually looking forward to putting on arm/leg warmers this winter. All in all, I feel lucky to call San Diego home.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Laying down the baselines this week to give myself something to reflect upon in 6 months and a year. Last week was crazy with the two day trip to Vegas for Interbike and then catching back up at work; Friday was insanity. I came home late Friday night and the boys had been enjoying the brew a little too much. I knew Kyle would be super crabby in the morning when we woke up to the alarm for the impending doom of Palomar for Jo's birthday. [awesome cycling chica]. Let's just say my thoughts were quite accurate when we woke up at 5:45am. After 15 min of complaining and indecisiveness, I made him say yes or no, because if it was no, I was going to Fiesta Island for the TCSD triathlon.

road trip to vegas - back of the van. horrible shot cause
i lost my iphone, so i have the old 3G no front camera.
Workin' - Felt founder Jim Felt talking Felt Bikes history.
probably not safe for public view. but hilarious.
Back to the club race: Packed rather quickly, skipped breakfast and had to get Kermit ready. I hadn't ridden him in quite a while and I had a bunch of stuff to do for him to be okay to ride. Left my house at 6:21am for Fiesta, with a 7am start time. Had quite the warmup and made it in time to score a sweet [yet unfair] transition spot in the bushes, register, and get the wetsuit on.

Swim went well; stayed on Kosuke's feet for maybe 250 yards. Turned the buoys alone, and swam back next to a dude and Mr. Prez [S. Banister] and apparently some dolphins. Yes dolphins deep in Mission Bay - they must have been very lost, and quite disgusted - if dolphins can feel disgust.

Bike was alright. 5 loops of blah, and getting passed by some road bikers with aerobars, which is so not awesome; can't wait to put some work in on the bike and start crushing souls again. There were the usual cheater drafting groups ["we've been switching the entire time!"]  = not cool buddy, way to set an awesome example for all the new peeps and I can't believe you are actually admitting to cheating! I do have to poke fun at one of my swim students, Mo. He passed me and asked me in his awesome foreign accent if I was "on my turd lap or fourth?" I had to crack up a bit internally, as yes, I felt like I was on my turd poo feeling lap, but as the case was I was on my fourth. Thankfully.

Headed into T2 and took a while to put on my [non] running shoes. I think a chica passed me there, and then 2 more passed me on the run. Ended up 4th and ran 8:22s.  Got an awesome blister on the side of my foot from the [non] running shoes, even with socks. Found my actual shoes in my car later that day. Running those almost 4 miles got me thinking; holy hell, I have 1 year to get ready for Tahoe, and I will be running 22.2 more miles. Daunting.

Ended up 1:16 something. There's the base, although the swim times can change, I'll be looking to improve upon my 34 min bike and 31 min run. But really what matters is in exactly 1 year from this race, I will be toeing the line at Ironman Lake Tahoe. 7:00am Pacific Time.

After the race I went for a 30 mile easy coffee stop ride with Chris and Kyle, who yes got out of bed to ride his bike, leaving at a relaxed 9:20am. We headed to Stone Brewery for dinner with Jo, since we missed her b-day ride that am, and then went out in PB and finished off the evening with a 10 mile ride on the tandem. Fun.

Parlee Love at the coffee [tea] stop
Yesterday I rode with Noko and new friend Maureen [who has ridden on the Moment ride before] in east county. They dragged me around the loop for a 2:41:21 ride time [and no breaks for this lady, since I was back of the pack as evident by the 2:43 elapsed time, waiting at a construction stop.] Those two ladies are fresh off their Vegas performance and fitness...boy was it a struggle for me; but it gave me the motivation to bounce back into it.

Since I often do TCSD club races, and ride the Great Western Loop, doing these two this week while "out of shape" has given be the base upon which I will grow and get speedy.

Ready or not, next week is approaching. 

Oh, and a quick Happy Birthday to my amazing husband. I vowed to you that I'd never slow down; so this year you better keep up!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Open cans of...

With Ironman Tahoe just over a year away, I'm not exactly chomping at the bit to get back at it again. I do have a renewed focus and excitement towards 2013 since I'm going into it with a plan, but the plan doesn't start till October I'm trying to enjoy the here and now, and not get too freaked out about the impending structure.

Structure is something I had grown accustomed to with swimming. The structure grew from the 3 months for the high school season, to adding in summer sessions in Minneapolis, extending the season to 5 months, and then college, where the 8 month season with a double taper was my life for 4 years. When the season was over, it was over. Lazy person mode set in. Exercise was a joke, and if I put my toes in the pool, it better have been after laying in the sun, tanning.

Swimming was such an on and off thing for me. I was either fully in it, or fully out. Yet knowing the season would eventually start again, it didn't matter how far I let myself go, because we always had dryland training to kick our butts back into shape. Some of my sorest moments were hobbling around the UND campus, dreading that track and football field each afternoon, and well, the days and weeks after Ironman St. George...but we'll put those memories aside for a while.
senior sioux girls on training trip in FL
In Southern California, and in the world of Pro athletes, [since don't you know, we're all pro's down] there really isn't an off season for triathlon. You can find a race every month...and if it isn't a tri, there's some half marathon that everyone's doing, or in my case, the road racing season will start back up again. So, starting Oct 1, I'll be busting my butt for 24 weeks until race day at Oceanside 70.3 - then a week [and hopefully more] to recover, and then another 24 week block until Ironman Tahoe.

Structure training for 12 months...this is new.

Where will I find the motivation to keep going? To make the training worth it? All for two out of 365 days? That sounds like craziness.

So in the next two weeks I'm working on finding the motivation. And enjoying the unstructured training while it lasts. Today was a quick ride up the coast with the Moment ride - which turned into Noko, Judd and me. A great chatty ride. This week I'm heading to Vegas on Tuesday and flying back on Wednesday night for a brief look at Interbike. And next weekend is wide open - TCSD club race, ladies ride with Moment, or a birthday party on Mt. Palomar - yeah fun! [puke my guts out!] Hey at least I get to pick my fun.

Ready to open a can of Whoop Ass on the 2013 season. Oh yeah, in the 30-34 AG - YIKES!
yes, an actual can of Whoop Ass

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


When I lived in Minnesota, autumn used to mean summer was ending, leaves changing, school's starting, and the days are noticeably shorter.

Now that I've been in So Cal for 5 autumns, I've almost forgotten what the leaves of fall look like, what going back to school feels like, and what the transition to winter is all about. Days getting shorter unfortunately do not change with a nicer climate. I do miss Minnesota - but not nearly enough to want to move back...sorry mom. Life in San Diego has been great; summer has been crazy busy and blogging has been lacking. I usually post a year end, but this year has had quite a few beginnings and endings, and what's a calendar and seasons to decide starts and finishes.

Summarizing summer sounds a bit like this:

I left off with the awesome race I had at SDIT, faking my way into shape. Moment was sponsoring the Carlsbad Triathlon a month later, so I snagged a free entry the day before the race (after standing on my feet all day moving the entire store to Carlsbad and back) and put together an okay race.
elusive both feet off ground pic!
My last run was SDIT and I had zero expectations. Carlsbad is a swimmers race, with a 1000 yard swim, 18 mile bike and a lovely 5k run. Although I was almost 2 min slower than last year and my run pace was slower than SDIT (and only half the distance!) I managed to get an AG win by 6 min, although I felt it was undeserving. I suppose it's about who shows up, and that's about what I did.

July and August [and mostly only September] were filled with work in preparations for the 4th annual San Diego Triathlon Classic that happened last weekend. All I can say is boy I'm glad it's over. Another mostly successful event with another sleepless evening in preparation for our biggest event of the year. It still kills me how people have the nerve to ask if I'm racing or if I raced. Um, no. The total amount of sleep the week before is right around 20 hours...I don't think I could physically race, even if I was allowed to! I hope you had fun if you participated...because that's why we do it! It sure ain't for the money.

My mom came to visit at the end of August. Sadly, Kyle was out to sea the entire time, but we had a blast in the short amount of time she was in San Diego. A zoo visit [I've lived in SD for 5 summers, and still haven't been until now!] and some time spent on the beach were the highlights.

oh yeah, i died my hair like gold medalist megan rapinoe

Managed a cove swim on Labor Day with Kyle. Such a rarity in life and it was pretty awesome. The swell was coming in and we tried to enter the caves but quickly retreated. 
floating w/ steve & frank. kyle not so much floating.
say "sharks!"
beach day at the cove? weirdos.
And... I pulled the trigger on my 2013 triathlon plans. I decided to give Oceanside a try - I've lived in CA for 5 years watching and following this race, and I have yet to toe the line of the closest Ironman branded event to where I live. I've had a lot of friends race [and with great success]. I hear it's a cold race with a hilly bike. After the heat of Panama last Jan, bring it. I swim in the ocean all winter and I'm not scared of a little chill. In fact, I'll embrace it because that's what I do...I'm Minnesotan, right?

So a couple weeks after Oceanside opened up, and I registered, a new Ironman was announced. Lake Tahoe. A full distance Ironman, new, and back in California...hmm. I know I know, I said I'd never do another one, but that was before this race was announced!! It's another first time event which I really like doing. Some people get nervous about first time events, but as a race director and a participant of a couple of first time events, I think they are the best. The volunteers are super excited, the locals aren't totally pissed off yet because they don't quite know what's going to hit them, and there aren't any expectations for participant times or any prior results to get anxious about. So, after a week of consideration after the announcement, I set my alarm and registered right when it opened [I was actually in a bike fitting at work, and cleared it with the lady ahead of time...]. So a boat load of money to the big M Dot corporation, paid for by the check I got for those stolen wheels at ITU. The race sold out in less than 24 hours. 

So just as May 1, 2010 was stuck in my head for a year, September 22, 2013 here I come. 1 year and 10 days...

Official training starts Oct 1.
24 weeks to Oceanside, 1 week rest and then 24 weeks to Tahoe; couldn't have planned it any better.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

family vacation

husband returned from deployment.
i worked. i raced.
he raced. he crashed. [someone crashed into him]

Then we flew to Ohio. Our first flight together! Hauling all our "camera equipment" for our documentary of how awesome our life is. Nice try, says the lady at the counter - that'll be $500 unless you want to say it's a bike; then it's only $150. Okay, so we lie and say it's a bike, but really it's a bike. Or rather two bikes. We stopped trying to push our luck. At least our bags flew for free - welcome home sailor!

other sister megan :)
Ohio trip was filled with a lot of food, family, and fun. And too much humidity, heat, and hell. And by hell, I mean an hour long criterium race in the heat and humidity. What [in the hell] were we thinking? [Kyle signed me up while he was on a metal ship, sailing in the hot Persian Gulf, while dreaming of riding his new bike; let's face it, he wasn't thinking and I'm a sucker for punishment.]

swinging sibblings
Before I get to the race, I'd like to thank my mothers-in-law. Yes mothers - they rock. Seriously awesome moms who know how to cook real food and make our bellies happy and our hearts full. Ann [and family in tow] brought us a cooler of food to the airport for our climbing adventures in KY before heading to Ohio. Sandwiches, veggies, breakfast, yogurt, beer, snacks...and her amazing chocolate chip [crack] cookies. Before you know it, you've eaten 5. And are still going back to the bag for more. [Sorry to my mom, they weren't in Tupperware; at least I know what to get you for Christmas]. And to Kris for the amazing breakfasts and our family dinner, where I got to meet the Smith's and experience a midwestern storm that I've actually missed. Thank you moms. I'm lucky enough to have 3. And yes, thanks to the dads; John, especially for the awesome photography of our race, and Bill for the hospitality and laughs.

grill time during the storm
family dinner at the "adults" table - not so sure that's an accurate adjective.

Alright: Hyde Park Blast Criterium. The race sucked. From the gun to the end. Pure sufferfest. The suffering was more than Panama - because in Panama, when I suffered, I got to walk. When I suffered in Ohio, I had to suck wheel even harder. Do. Not. Get. Dropped.

Interesting course in a quaint town, with a diversion that leads you up a narrow residential alley and a I used my big ring for a couple laps, and after my pack got dropped from the break, I began to shift down and spin up the hill as a means of conservation. Power was non existent [thank you chocolate chip cookies + beer] and my only method of preservation was wheel sucking and spinning. Absolutely no endurance on the straights, which BTW were straight INTO THE WIND. Oh, but it wasn't a nice Pacific Ocean cool breeze...this "wind" was straight from the breath of Hades. Hotter than hell wind that is neither refreshing nor beneficial in any way. I have zero memories of this wind from my childhood in MN - probably because I always had my head underwater in the lakes.

suffering. next to a giant. 
I can't even remember how many times I was near cracking off the back of this chase pack. "Hold on. Hold on. The pace will ease up. No it won't. OMG." Somehow I managed to keep making my way up the chase pack to the front while on the hill. Spinning. That never happens in So Cal. I was working harder on the straights, when I was drafting. It was craziness how these ladies were mashing up...I would have blown up. But luckily their cadence was so low that my super easy gearing with relatively high cadence actually enabled me to move up and conserve energy...what little I had. Gatorade was a thick sugar tar and I would've paid a competitor $100 for a chunk of ice in my mouth [and down my bra] during the race.

Last lap. I found myself sitting in the back on the last corner...crap! Where did the time go! Well now I suppose it's time to stand up for this long straightaway. And "sprint" with all my heart, since my legs and lungs weren't paying attention to my crazed mind anymore.

Ended sprinting my way to 2nd in the chase group which was good enough for 10th OA and 1st in the Cat 3 women. I even beat some 1's and 2's that were in my group! What a race. $60 richer... however, like I said, I would've traded in that prize money for ice packs. Oh yeah, and we didn't get lapped...score!

Surprised, but Ohio has a women's scene. It's fast, and the camaraderie is similar to So Cal - cold. Arguments about the results, no podium and no constructive feedback after the race. My beef was that they didn't score it separately.

Husband survived his 30 min race before mine and in typical super sherpa fashion, brought me a beer, when I just needed ice for the heat stroke I was experiencing. After my near internal meltdown, I did enjoy some libations.

Pedicures, pool time and pizza. Miguel's Pizza. Backtrack to day 1-2; we made a trek down to good 'ole Slade, Kentucky; home of the Red River Gorge and some of the nations best sport climbing [and pizza]. Motel'd it since we accidentally left our sleeping bag in the bike box that we passed along to the parents we met at the airport...doh! Climbed all day and earned our pizza. Drove to Cincinnati where we earned a shower.

Ale8 and Miguels - yummy in my tummy
Very excited I made the switch at work to enjoy the time with my husband and his family. Our time in Ohio was quick and we feel as if we didn't get enough time with either family, but are thankful for the vacation.  Once we returned to SD we got a vacation from our vacation. Fun at the fair, a housewarming party in Encinitas, the 4th of July, a ride on our new bikes, and of course, each other.

So happy my husband, my sherpa, my sailor, my best, and forever friend is back from his ocean journeys. Welcome home Kyle.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Faking fitness with my competitive nature

June 24th was the 30th Annual San Diego International Triathlon. It was my 5th year participating (year one I swam for a relay). I love this race even with all it's faults. It's in my backyard. My training grounds. I know the course and every pothole and corner and hill. This is my annual bench mark in this sometimes crazy triathlon journey. Kyle returned from deployment 2 days before, and it is also the Anniversary Sale weekend for Moment Cycle Sport, so I knew I'd be trashed going into this race.

Plan of the day: [POD in Kyle Navy terms] Race hard. Don't hold back. Kill the swim. Race the bike, and start pushing it at the first guard shack, bomb the descent. And run without holding back. Turnover.

Mostly a success.
my sherpa is back!
Swam 11:57. Finally under 12 min. I knew I was capable. This year the young ladies were put after the old ladies. Great; I felt bad swimming over old men, but now women?! Ugh... Nothing is ever intentional I swear. Started out hard. Whitney and Christine and another random girl hopped on my sides and I worked hard to get away. First 100 yards was pretty fast but I didn't feel gassed so I kept up with the pressure on my arms and kept kicking hard. Yes it's triathlon, and yes, I kick. :) Finished feeling ready to ride and hoping that I didn't swallow too much nasty bay water.

passing the walkers. silly small swim caps.
Biked 49:27. Got on Kermit and I was off. Since his wheels got stolen Jen was nice enough to let me borrow her 404/disc for the race. Cory gave the disc some much needed love (and glue) earlier in the week. Unfortunately the valve stem is too long for the hole and a regular pump adapter doesn't work. We managed to get it up to almost 100 [normal tubular psi is 120] with the air compressor the night before. Woke up and it was low. Probably rode 60psi in the race. Not ideal. Was mashing up all my power. I was riding with most of the weight on my arms to try and avoid bottoming out the disc. Carly passed me on the first loop on our way back [at about the same point as she did last year] and I knew I wouldn't be able to stay with her. She kicked my ass at Panama and has been killing it locally. I raced my race, being sure to take care of the disc and myself. Rolled into T2 and the volunteers were yelling at me to go into the guys portion of the transition area - "Um, no, lady, thanks for your help, but my rack is this way!" and I headed back where I came from.

Sioux Girl bike. Moment Kit. = mismatch racing
Run 47:33 Out onto the run course I saw Kyle on his bike and he tossed me a sip of water. He asked if I was leading and I said no, Carly was in front of me, and he was like are you sure? Anyway, 3 min later about a mile into the course, she passes me. WTF? What happened to you? Apparently she actually listened to the same lady  and had to go this crazy way looping around transition and so I got out before she even racked her bike. Bummer for her.

trying to stay with her
So run run run. Keep running. Ouch. Lungs are dead, legs are heavy. Trying to keep the turnover high. Cory with Ethan in tow, and Judd joined Kyle on the bike cheering squad train, and I felt like I was winning the Ironman WC. Super thanks to those guys for the cheers. Got through the nasty car rental area and onto the board walk where the eventual 2nd place chic passed me with a vengeance. Literally I couldn't even keep up with her for 1 step. So for the rest of the race it was a gut wrenching dig to the finish, hoping that all those footsteps behind me were that of males.

too tired to enjoy the prettyness
Finish. Wow that hurt. In a much needed push myself to threshold way. 5 min PR and 3rd place AG again. But a much different race for me.

Overall 1:51. In the last 4 years of doing this race I've dropped 12 minutes. In the last 3 years I've gotten 3rd place in my age group every year. Run was a surprising 7:39 average! Maybe that month of running in April actually helped? Maybe those 2 days of hill repeats with Noko and 3 days in the gym worked? Or maybe, I really know how to push my body beyond it's fitness when I toe the line. Can my competitive nature give me fake fitness?
Off to work after the race, and Kyle was off to Ontario for his first race of the season [on land anyway].  Carlsbad and the latest challenge reports are next up in the blogging backlog.